Jimmy Tucker 'proud' after Launceston get first draw

Jimmy Tucker
Jimmy Tucker scored a try for Cornwall when they won the County Championship at Twickenham in 1999

New Launceston head coach Jimmy Tucker says he is proud of his squad after leading the club to a 17-17 draw with Southend in National Two South.

It was the first time this season that bottom-of-the-table Launceston had not been beaten and it came days after Tucker took over from Mike Lewis.

"I've asked the boys for character and commitment - and they've given it to me in bucket loads," Tucker said.

"I'm gutted to have drawn, it feels like we've lost, but I'm very proud."

Tries from James Salter, Dan Lee and Eddie McGinley had given Launceston a 17-12 lead, before Chris Strachan's 76th-minute try salvaged a draw for the Essex club.

"They didn't give up," said Tucker, who was named as the club's new boss after Mike Lewis stepped down.

"In the past, opposition teams have come back at us and sneaked a penalty at the end, but in the last two or three minutes we were the team on the attack, we were the guys that were hanging on for a penalty that didn't come."

Launceston are still six points adrift at the bottom if National Two South, but Tucker is convinced that his side are able to survive in the league.

"It's a big challenge but what's better than having a challenge for the rest of the season?" he told BBC Radio Cornwall.

"Do you want to be in mid-table safety with nothing to play for?

"I don't want to be at the foot of the table, but give me and the boys a challenge and give us something to get our teeth into."

Tucker is the third man to take charge of Launceston since the end of last season following the resignation of Neil Bayliss in June because of budget cuts.